David Knight - 23rd June 2014

BAFTA-winner Tinge Krishnan has directed an unusual and emotionally-charged piece for Talk In Colour's The Cell (Telegrams Remix) that uses powerful improvisation to express the raw dynamics of a couple’s relationship. It also places actors Shobna Gulati (Coronation Street, Dinner Ladies) and Tony Pitts (War Horse, Red Riding: In The Year Of Our Lord) in situations in which they had never been seen before.

“The idea was Richard Avedon meets Steve McQueen," says Tinge. "And the idea was to show two people experiencing the range of emotions that couples journey through in a relationship.” 

Although Tony and Shobna both have dance backgrounds, and Tinge referenced the work of Merce Cunningham and Trisha Brown to them in prep, there was no actual choreography planned. The themes of rage and loss are explored – the song was itself written about cancer – where the dance elements are a subtext in the physical tussle between the actors.

The improvisation theme continues with a companion piece for the original version of the song which incorporates a band performance from Talk In Colour into the improvisational process. Shobna and Tony guided the impro with the band responding in the moment ‘in character' - but having little idea what was going to happen from one moment to the next. 

“As the band create a lot of their work based on improvised sessions I thought the mix of structure and impro might appeal to them," Tinge explains. "And as Tony and Shobna are two of the most powerful improvisers I know, it worked out well.” 


DirectorTinge Krishnan
ProducerKevin Proctor
Production CompanyDisruptive Element Films
Production ManagerChris Bangs
Director of PhotographyCatherine Derry
2nd ACMarisa Polin
Costume designerRachel Gold
HairElizabeth Arboleda
Make-upElizabeth Arboleda
EditorDominique Lutier
EditorJoon Goh
ColouristMatthew Lee-redman
Grading companyHogarth
Lead actorShobna Gulati
Lead actorTony Pitts
Director's RepresentationCurtis Brown
LabelNight Cabin

David Knight - 23rd June 2014

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